Mandarin, The Power Language of the Future
There are many benefits of being fluent in more than one language, no matter what that language is. However, some languages have more advantages than others. Chinese Mandarin is one of those powerful languages being one of the most spoken languages, even if it is one of the most difficult to learn. Teaching kids Chinese Mandarin early on is setting them up for a brighter future.
As you would know that now China is world’s second largest economic powerhouse – there is no better choice than Mandarin as your go to second language. Below you will find the top reasons why kids should learn Chinese Mandarin.
Why Kids Should Learn Mandarin
Here are 10 reasons that children should learn Chinese Mandarin
1. China – a Rising World Economic Power
According to an article published on New York Times, China has surpassed Japan in the second quarter to become the world’s second-largest economy behind the United States. The rest of the world will have to reckon with a new economic superpower in the very near future.
Nicholas R. Lardy, an economist at the Peterson Institute for International Economics stated that this phenomenon where China has been eclipsing Japan economically, indirectly reconfirms what has been happening for the better part of the decade and that the Chinese are now the biggest trading partner rather than the U.S. or Japan.
2. Chinese Mandarin is The World’s Most Widely Spoken Language
Although the numbers reported may be slightly off in some website or reports, Ethnologue and Wiki puts the number of native Mandarin speakers close to 1.2 billion speakers. Globally we are talking about an astonishing 20% of the world’s population speaks some form of a Chinese language.
This without a doubt puts the language as the most spoken language in the world. Learning Mandarin will enable your child to speak with more than a billion people worldwide. And if your child already speaks English, your child would almost be able to communicate to half the world’s population!
3. Learning Mandarin Helps to Develop Accurate Hearing and Interpretation of Sounds
Learning tonal languages is easier for children. This is because young children are more sensitive to the differences in sounds. The younger a child begins learning, the more accurate they can replicate these sounds. This familiarity with tones and sounds actually helps cultivate musical ability in children.
A study at the University of California in San Diego found a strong connection between fluency in a tonal language, and the development of the perfect pitch. Perfect pitch is a suggestive ability of certain advanced cortical processes. So not only does learning Mandarin potentially benefit the brain, it potentially makes the child sings better.
4. Learning Mandarin Helps the Better Interpretation of Symbols
Mandarin in the form of writing is made up of over thousands of characters. Learners of Mandarin have to be able to read and interpret a vast number of visual symbols. In doing so, children are more likely to activate more regions of the brain than English, which relies on a phonetic alphabet.
Through learning Mandarin, children can become more proficient at visual communication, more enthusiastically interpreting symbols in visual art and understanding distinctions in symbolism and visual communication.
5. Stronger Math Skills are gained by learning Chinese Mandarin
Studies shows that there is actually a scientific association between learning Mandarin and improved mathematical ability. Scientists have come to conclusion based on their studies, the mathematical concepts are interconnected to the language fluency, and not a separate subject activating a different part of the brain.
Because Mandarin involves learning the language, sounds, drawing, and math as a whole hence it activates more regions of the brain and improves cognitive development overall, this applies to adults too. In fact, speakers of Mandarin use more of their brain at any one time, unlike English speakers who be likely to alternate between left and right hemispheres. In theory, this causes more balanced brain could lead to greater overall creativity, enhanced problem-solving, and increased emotional intelligence.
6. Knowing to Speak Chinese Mandarin can increase out of the box thinking
The buzz and the revelations about how the workforce in the future will be automated – requiring ingenuity and creativity being left to humans. How are we as parents going to help build and pave a greater way to enrich creative thinking skills in children? One of the best way is by learning a second language.
Several studies have proven greater creativity and problem solving skills amongst bilinguals. Learning a foreign language enable children see the world through different lenses. The ability to reflect on multiple viewpoints to a problem is a foundation of creative problem solving.
7. Teaching Kids Chinese Gives Them a Better Chance in Getting Admitted to Better Schools
It is no secret that getting into better schools has gotten harder than before. Most students are applying to multiple schools to ensure that they have a fallback option just in case their number one choice of school rejects their application.
According to The Washington Post, admission rates at top colleges are dropping drastically especially with Ivy League schools such as Harvard and Stanford only admits 5 to 5.3 percent of candidates. Even state schools are becoming more difficult to get into such as UCLA records an admittance rate of 17.3 percent.
It is forecasted that these rates will continue to decline, it is crucial that children should start strategically planned out their education curriculum and how will they be different from the rest.
8. Mandarin Speakers Stand Out from The Croud
With the fierce competition to get into good schools, one of the biggest and most common challenges a child faces is standing apart from the thousands of other applicants.
Most schools offer French or Spanish as an elective and most schools do not even have Mandarin classes offered. Being able to list a foreign language that is rarely seen on applications is a great way to distinguish oneself.
9. Being Able to Speak Chinese Mandarin Boosts career advancement
Education is critical for the workforce of the future and being bilingual can open up many career options. There are a huge number of jobs in education, healthcare, national security, translation, tourism, and international business require or favor candidates who are bilingual, resulting a higher job opportunities for those who can speak a second language.
Moreover, speaking a foreign language can make it easier to be eligible for jobs and work-study programs in other countries – especially if you have critical skills.
10. Learning Chinese is Fun!
There is an enjoyment that comes from being able to converse with others in their native language and the sense of achievement. It is also fun to discover words in a foreign language that don’t exist in your native tongue.
The fun of learning a foreign language is discovering differences in how people view the world. It’s fun to think about why dogs say “woof” in English, “wang wang” in Mandarin and “wow wow” in Cantonese.
Want to teach your child Mandarin? Take a look at our Learn Chinese for Kids Free Lessons.